good for your guts

Fermentation happens
Its the path of least resistance
Kimchi, koji, miso
tempeh, yogurt.
Sandor Katz, the Abraham of
a fermented nation.
Master of that flavorful space
between fresh and rotten
food gone so bad its good
but try to wait
just a few more months
and it will be
A salty surprise
We’re good for your guts.

In other words, beet kimchi is brewing next to my bed (the warmest space in the house) and it sings me to sleep each night with a sweet, magical, ancient lullaby as it converts its sugar to acids and gasses. I.Can’t.Wait. 431661_894000997948_388883829_n

More from the food front; the garden is growing up so fast! The peas are potty-trained and needing to be trellised already, the beans are off to preschool.  The root vegetables are struggling in the clay-filled soil, but thank goodness for the No Vegetable Left Behind act, so everything can be harvested at once. 

Slap Your Mama Spicy Root Kimchi 

sea salt
1 lb. daikon radishes
1 lb. beets
1 lb. carrots 
a few Jerusalem artichokes 
3 inches fresh gingerroot
3-4  cloves garlic (or more!)
3-4 hot red chilies (or more!), depending on how much room for spice you have in your life. I use ghost peppers, but they pack a punch.

1. Wash vegetables thoroughly
2. Grate radish, beets, and carrots.  If you have a food processor with a grating attachment, this will save hours of time and inches of bloody fingers. 
3. Mix a brine of about 4 cups water and 3 tablespoons salt. 
4. Let  grated vegetables soak in the brine. Use a  plate or other weight to keep the vegetables submerged until soft, a few hours  or overnight. 
5. Prepare the spices: Grate the ginger; chop the garlic and onion; remove  seeds from the chilies and chop or crush, or throw them in whole. Kimchi can  absorb a lot of spice. Experiment with quantities and don’t worry too much about  them. Mix spices into a paste, adding grated horseradish if desired. 
6.. Drain brine off vegetables, reserving brine. Taste vegetables for  saltiness. You want them to taste decidedly salty, but not unpleasantly so. If  they are too salty, rinse them. If you cannot taste salt, sprinkle with a couple  of teaspoons of salt and mix. 
7. Mix the vegetables with the spice paste. Mix everything together  thoroughly and stuff it into a clean glass 1 gallon jar. Pack it tightly into the jar,  pressing down until brine rises. If necessary, add a little of the reserved  vegetable-soaking brine to submerge the vegetables. Weight the vegetables down  with a smaller jar, or with a zip-lock bag filled with some brine. Every day,  use your (clean!) finger to push the vegetables back under the brine. Cover the  jar to keep out dust and flies. 
8. Ferment in your kitchen or other warm place. Taste the kimchi every day.  After about two weeks of fermentation, when it tastes ripe, move it to the  refrigerator.

read more: “The Revolution Will Not be Microwaved” – Zandor Katz

No big deal, but I did hug Zandor Katz at a book signing.  That night ranked up there with the night I went to see this movie.



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